Monday, 11 May 2015


LITTLE STAR images copyright D.C. THOMSON & Co., Ltd

Well, if that title doesn't grab your attention, nothing ever will.
Back between 1971 and '72, while I was yet 13, I had a paper round.
One dark morning, in January '71, while in the newsagent's collecting my
newspapers for delivery, I noticed a new comic on sale - LITTLE STAR.
It was published by D.C. THOMSON and was a companion paper to their
TWINKLE title.  Even 'though Little Star was a nursery comic and I was
obviously far too old for it, I purchased the first few issues anyway.
(I could seldom resist the lure of a new weekly.)

The second issue had free gift stickers featuring characters from
the comic, which I promptly affixed to an ARIEL BALLOON PUMP,
purchased from WOOLWORTH'S back in, if the price of 3/11 marked
on the surface is anything to go by, the (probably late) 1960s.  Thing is.
I remember the day my mother bought this balloon pump (which I
still have) as I was with her when she did.

The balloon pump resided in the sideboard for many years, until said
item of furniture was given to a relative in 1981.  12 years later, I bought
the sideboard back, and the balloon pump was reunited with its 'home' and
has lived there again for 22 years.  There's a clown on the pump, whose face
I covered with a sticker, but I always remembered that face - or so I thought.
Having seen a duplicate pump only recently, I was surprised to discover that
the face was not similar to MAD's ALFRED E. NEUMAN as I had believed
for many a long year, but entirely different.  However, having seen it again,
the reset button was pressed in my mind and the memory of it as it
actually was instantly resurfaced.  Funny thing memory, eh?

What surprised me 'though, was that, after 40-odd years of
thinking that there had been only the seven stickers I'd affixed to the
balloon pump, there had actually been eleven - plus a badge.  I didn't
remember the other four - or what I did with them - and they would've
languished in limbo if I hadn't re-acquired the early issues of the comic
and seen a picture of them all.  As I said - funny thing memory, eh?
Below is the ad from #1 for the upcoming free gift.  (The same
illustration was used for the cover of #2.)

Anyway, no great insight or profundity this time around (when is
there ever, some of you may be thinking), but I just wanted to relive
the past for a few moments and considered it selfish not to share.


John Pitt said...

This is another of those I don't remember ever seeing. I used to buy Twinkle fory 2 girls when they were little. I believe it was one of the postage stamps commemorating British comics?

Kid said...

You'll be seeing more of them soon, JP - I've just bought the first 36 issues. You're doubtless right about the stamps, but I don't remember seeing all the comics which were used on them.

John Pitt said...

Other stamps included Dandy, Beano, Topper, Bunty, Eagle & Valiant.

Kid said...

I think I got the first set of comic stamps (I did, in fact, 'cos I featured them on the blog), but if there was another set, I'm not sure I got that one.

Correction: Having looked at the eBay ad again, what I've bought is 26 issues of Little Star between 1-36, inclusive of #1.

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